Monday, May 23, 2016

Destroy Your Pet’s Destructive Behavior

Cleaning up your dog’s messes can be exhausting. Not to mention, expensive. Many pet owners have to come home to their new clothing ripped to shreds or their furniture wrecked to pieces.

Before coming up with a solution to your dog’s destructive habits, it’s important to determine what’s setting off your dog’s war against your home. Take it from the experts at PetParent to explain the five root causes of your pup’s destructive behavior.

A little pool time with Beagles

For one short day this month, the weather was really hot.

Really hot.

91 degrees hot.

And on that day, we opened the pool.

It was beautiful. Hot weather, cool clean water, a pool, and two dogs looking to jump right in. Ahhh!!!

Daisy and Jasper were cute, but they had nothing on the two Beagles indulging in a little pool time in this week’s Favorite Friday video. I love my Shelties very much, but there’s just something about a Beagle face that makes my heart go pitter-patter. OMD! Irresistible!

Can you make it through without melting?:)

Happy Friday everyone!

Dog Products We’re Wagging About in May

From Petco’s "Star Wars" Pet Fan Collection to Bocce’s Bakery’s wheat-free biscuits, here's what caught our eye this month.

How a Dog Groomer Ended up Directing a Tegan and Sara Video
Ask Frank: Why Don’t My Neighbors Appreciate My “Singing” at Night?
Guinnevere Shuster Has Fun With “Shelter Dogs in a Photo Booth”
Editor’s note: Have you seen the new Dogster print magazine in stores? Or in the waiting room of your vet’s office? This article appeared in our April-May issue. Subscribe to Dogster and get the bimonthly magazine delivered to your home.

Check out these product finds from Dogster magazine staff.

Smelling Fresh

We love our dogs, but it’s no secret that they can leave behind an unpleasant odor on their beds, our couches, carpets, and more. The nontoxic and water-based DogGone It formula takes the odor away, and you can spray it on your dog’s fur to eliminate the “wet dog” smell — and it’s odorless.

May the Force Be With You


Dogs can get in on the Star Wars action, too! Petco’s Star Wars Pet Fan Collection features a bunch of items for your pooch, including a Darth Vader Bowl, Clone Trooper Fattie Toy, and much, much more!

Clean Eating

Eliminate germs in your pup’s bowl by using Klean- bowl. The product comes with a stainless steel holder and recyclable refill bowls to make your dog’s mealtimes germ free. Simply place the refill bowls in the holder, and put your dog’s food or water inside. When your dog finishes, take out the refill bowl and replace with a clean one.

Stylish Pup

Your dog will look adorable in the All U Need is Love… and a Dog Bow Tie and matching collar from Artsy Barksy. The colorful products will make your pup look fashionable and picture perfect. The collar fits up to an 18-inch neck, and the bow tie comes in 1-inch (add $1), 3⁄4-inch, and 5/8-inch sizes.

Scrumptious Biscuits


Bocce’s Bakery’s new Basics line of wheat-free biscuits will leave your dog eating out of the palm of your hand — literally. The biscuits do not have any chemicals or preservatives and come in five different flavors: cheese, chicken, duck, peanut butter and banana, and salmon.

Flawless Coats

RomeKin USA’s variety of shampoos can leave your pup feeling and looking glamorous! The Deep Clean contains neem to kill and fight insects, as well as and lemongrass to kill and rosemary and aloe vera to promote hair growth and moisturize skin. The Whitening shampoo can help make your dog’s coat shiny, soft, and healthy. Last but not least, the Tear Free works great for dogs with sensitive skin and prevents eye irritation.

Raw Deliciousness

If you want to feed your dog raw food, give Five Star Frozen Diets a try. USDA inspected, certified, and approved, the raw diets can improve your dog’s digestion, benefit his coat, and lead to healthier teeth and gums. Comes in five flavors: chicken & vegetable, beef & vegetable, duck & vegetable, turkey & vegetable, and chicken, beef, & vegetable. Delivered right to your door.

The Top 10 Smartest Dog Breeds

These top ten canine Einsteins all share two qualities: the ability to quickly learn new commands and the obedience to perform them 95% of the time or better.

Want to see if your dog made the list? The full ranking of 133 dog breeds breaks it all down.

Rover’s giving you 1 free walk
with the perfect dog walker!
Claim my Free Walk
Is your dog a smartypants? Not sure? Learn more about doggie intelligence in our post “How Smart is Your Dog?” with links to tests you can try yourself!

And now, let’s meet the masterminds of the dog world.

The top 10 smartest dog breeds

10. Australian Cattle Dog
Australian Cattle Dog Breed
These beautiful dogs are a unique crossbreeed of blue merle shepherds imported from England and the native Australian dingo. High energy and hard working, he thrives in an active home doing intensive sports like agility, rally obedience, herding trials, and flyball.

9. Rottweiler
Rottweiler Top 10 Smartest Dog Breeds
Ancient Roman cattle herders, cart pullers, and guardians, the rottweiler is renowned for his gentleness with family and friends, and strength and bravery in defending them. Though known for his docile nature, thorough training and socialization is an absolute must for puppies to mature into solid canine citizens.

8. Papillon
papillon top 10 smartest dog breeds
The Papillon is named for their graceful feathered and raised ears. Royal portraiture shows small spaniels resembling the papillon as far back as the 16th century! They are active, companionable, and highly trainable—the smartest of the toy dog breeds.

7. Labrador Retriever
Labrador Retriever - Top 10 Smartest Dog Breeds
The most popular breed of dog in the US 23 years in a row, the labrador retriever is named for the cold waters off Newfoundland where they were first bred. A short thick coat, webbed feet, and a heavy tail help the lab swim long distances in cold water. In addition to their hunting prowess, labs are popular favorites for canine water rescue, therapy work, and assistance dog training. Labs excel in the canine sport of dock jumping.

6. Shetland Sheepdog
Shetland Sheepdog - Smartest Dog Breeds
The shetland sheepdog may look just like a miniature collie, but they started out as a local variant of the Icelandic sheepdog found in the Shetland Islands. These little spitz shepherds were then bred to rough collies to create this unique breed. Playful and energetic, the sheltie is equally at home working on the farm or in the burbs, showing off in agility, flyball, and obedience.

5. Doberman Pinscher
The doberman pinscher was originally bred by a German tax collector for protection on his rounds. Modern dobermans are far less aggressive and make wonderful family dogs that love to play and are extremely loyal.

4. Golden Retriever
Originally hailing from Scotland, the golden retriever breed was started in 1865 out of a lone yellow pup from a litter of black wavy coated retrievers cross bred to a local type of water spaniel by Lord Tweedmouth of Guisachan in Scotland. This gorgeous, friendly dog still excels in retrieving, as well as agility and obedience, and as service dogs.

3. German Shepherd
The modern German Shepherd was standardized by breeder Captain Max von Stephanitz in 1889 with a goal of “utility and intelligence.” As Germany modernized and the need for working herding dogs seemed on the decline, von Stephanitz worked with police and dog clubs to develop a set of protection and obedience tests which today is still practiced and known as Schutzhund (protection dog).

2. Poodle
More than just a foofoo haircut, poodles were originally bred in Germany for bird hunting and water retrieving, and have been excelling at that task since before the invention of guns. Their storied history includes many occupations and locales, from herding sheep to crossing the battle field to bring supplies to the wounded to the performing arts. The poodle is remarkable for its loving nature, trainable intelligence, and sense of humor.

1. Border Collie
Border Collie - Smartest Dog Breeds
Originally known as the “Scotch sheep dog,” the border collie hails from the highland border of England and Scotland. Bred to think independently and at long distances from human shepherds, they have the problem solving intelligence and strong working drive to maintain control of the flock. Chaser, the dog who knows 1,022 toys by name, is an amazing example of her breed.

The Kennel Club - still registering puppy farm dogs

Last night, BBC Panorama aired a gruesome exposé of a northern Ireland puppy farmer called Eric Hale. (If you are in the UK, you can watch the whole programme on iPlayer here.)

But it was also an an exposé of the Kennel Club's continued registration of puppy farm dogs.

Despite repeated urging by the Kennel Club to prospective puppy-buyers to avoid puppy-farmed dogs, the organisation continues to register dogs bred by breeders such as Eric Hale. 

Hale is a show-breeder of Beagles - and before that Bearded Collies -  registering the Beagles under his Southistle affix.  He has registered at least 20 litters of Beagles with the Kennel Club - the last that I can find in August 2015, although this litter, from January 2016, was advertised on DoneDeal as also being KC-registered.

Clearly, Mr Hale is also breeding a whole heap of other dogs, as last night's programme revealed. The conditions looked grim - with little bedding and the dogs on sawdust. The programme claimed that the dogs did not routinely get access to the outside.

In its position statement on puppy farming, the KC states:
"Breeders who breed five or more litters a year normally require a breeding licence from their local authority, and in order to continue registering puppies with the Kennel Club, anyone seeking to register five or more litters in a single year is asked to provide a copy of their licence. The Kennel Club will also be entitled to ask for a licence from those individuals who collectively register more than five litters a year from a single address."

So, presumably, the KC has asked Mr Hale for a copy of his breeding license, and this will have shown how many dogs he is licensed to keep.

Here's the public record from 2012 - which shows that Mr and Mrs Hale are licensed to keep over 100 breeding bitches.

The Kennel Club often points out that not l volume breeders are puppy-farmers - citing Guide Dogs for the Blind as a large-scale breeder that is "responsible and caring".  But, of course, this exception does not prove the rule. Assistance dog charities or police-dog breeding programmes may mostly do a good job but, in practice, no volume breeder meets the needs of a really large number of breeding bitches unless they are in the public glare or are blessed with wad of cash from either charity donations or the public purse.

Truly raising, keeping and breeding dogs well is expensive and labour-intensive. 

The KC also maintains that "only two per cent [of breeders who register their dogs with the KC] breed more than five litters per annum". 

This is a weaselly statistic - it may be only 2 per cent of breeders, but it will be a higher percentage of actual puppies - so it is at least several-thousand puppies a year. (KC registrations per annum are about 225k.) 

However, if there are really so few volume breeders registering their dogs with the Kennel Club, how about the KC commits to inspecting any breeder that is licensed for more than, say, 10 breeding bitches - regardless of whether they have been inspected by their local authority (we know this task is often delegated to people who either don't care much or who don't have a clue)?  If the numbers really are so small, surely it is not going to be a huge toll on resources?

The KC constantly maintains that it is obliged to register any dog on its general register, as long as it meets some minimum requirements. Those requirements do not include the conditions in which the pups have been bred. 

Quite frankly, the registration of puppy-farm dogs remains a blot on the KC landscape and it needs to be addressed - to ease both our souls and the KC's reputation.

I have asked the KC for input regarding the continued registration of Mr Hale's puppies and will add here if I get it.